Author Archives: christopher scott author

Review: The Realm #1

Fifteen years ago, our world was overrun by creatures of myth; orcs, dragons, and other nameless horrors threw the entire planet into total chaos. Today, the shattered remnants of civilization must fight just to survive in a deadly new era of violence and mayhem. While a powerful sorcerer marshals his forces, a group of warriors embark on a journey to reclaim our world from the growing darkness.

A post-apocalyptic fantasy, western, is probably the simplest way to summarise The Realm the new series co-created by Seth M. Peck and Jeremy Haun. After some sort of apocalypse, humanity has returned to a medieval like society in order to survive. Enter Will Nolan, an escort/bounty hunter/bodyguard who seems to thrive in this new world. I’m curious to see where this story manages to go forward, and how they explore this strange world which is a mix of fantasy and zombie apocalypse.

The Realm‘s artwork manages to balance violence, action, and a dark atmosphere well. There’s a good amount of flowing action scenes throughout and the issue keeps readers on their toes. We’re also briefly introduced to two mysterious unnamed characters, a sorcerer, and a barbarian warrior, each with a real world vibe to them but at the same time mixing in fantasy tropes. The world is an interesting landscape with art that’s full of details giving us hints about this world and telling it’s own story.

The first issue is a solid start of what is sure to be the next hit that everyone will want. A great beginning and a great mix of genres.

Story: Seth M. Peck Art: Jeremy Haun
Color: Nick Filardi Letters: Thomas Mauer
Story: 8.5 Art: 8.5 Overall: 8.5 Recommendation: Buy

Image Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Review: Kingsman: The Red Diamond #1

Kingsman: The Golden Circle is in cinemas in September, and Millarworld and Image Comics have launched the sequel to the hit comic book series by Mark Millar and Dave Gibbons with Kingsman: The Red Diamond. Working-class super-spy Eggsy follows in his mentor’s footsteps but is still rough around the edges for a Kingsman agent. Rejected by his high school crush and hot on the heels of a rescue mission to save Prince Phillip, he embarks on an international terror plot in a story that starts where James Bond draws the line. A new creative team of Rob Williams and Simon Fraser take the helm for this six-issue miniseries.

By the time you get to the end of Kingsman: The Red Diamond #1, it’s surprising how even the most simple plans can take a turn when you’re a secret agent. Despite managing to save a Prince, Eggsy is placed on forced leave, which puts a bit of a cramp in his plans and has him heading home to see his mom and old neighborhood. This provides some interesting introspective as Eggsy is forced to think about where he is versus where he’s come from. It’s an interesting spin you don’t often see with this sort of story and one the original movie did well. But, the story isn’t all about Eggsy’s return home. There’s something sinister afoot, so I doubt the leave will last. We’re presented with a new villain, one that feels like a riff on a classic Bond villain, so we’ll see how he’s presented to make him stand out from the pack.

The art differs from Kingsman: Secret Service, yet that isn’t a bad thing. The action and intrigue remain as the story begins to unfold, and it’s all presented in a fun way. It feels as though Fraser is being allowed to create the world in his own style as opposed to mimicking whats come before. The headquarters of the Red Diamond is in the highlight of the issue evoking a classic sci-fi underwater lair made for villains.

A fun first issue that continues Eggsy’s adventures while at the same time reminding us of his past. A new creative team is allowed space to do “their thing” which pays off in the end.

Story: Rob Williams Art: Simon Fraser
Story: 9.0 Art: 8.5 Overall: 8.75 Recommendation: Buy

Image Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Review: Space Riders: Galaxy of Brutality #2.3

Space God Monster versus Space God Monster and The One True God of Evil sings the damn ENDSONG plunging entire galaxies into the AGE OF THE ABYSS and who are the only ones that can stop it?? You know damn well who, the SPACE RIDERS!! This chapter puts the ultimate in penultimate!!

Things of myth begin to appear as the Endstorm is unleashed in Space Riders: Galaxy of Brutality #2.3. This forces Captain Peligro to act on behalf of all space riders. He comes to the rescue of the captive ones in the process, as the fight for the life of the galaxy begins. Will it survive, or is this the end? Fabian Rangel Jr. delivers cosmic sci-fi entertainment that feels like a trippy heir to the King Jack Kirby.

The art by Alexis Ziritt continues its vibrant and psychedelic color scheme, revealing more and more influence of Jack Kirby. It brings in a lot of traditional classic science fiction elements in the process creating a combination that’s as much a draw visually as it is in the narrative. The giant space whale manages to steal the spotlight with its own imposing form.

The series is a fun visual treat that is a must for anyone that loves classic sci-fi psychedelic comics.

Story: Fabian Rangel Jr. Art: Alexis Ziritt
Story: 8.5 Art: 9.0 Overall: 8.75 Recommendation: Buy

Black Mask Studios provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Review: Gwar Orgasmageddon #3

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Join the greatest heavy metal band to ever terrorize an audience, the all-mighty GWAR, as they rampage through the past to catch Mr. Perfect and shut him down for good. One part revenge, two parts bloodlust, all parts GWAR craziness! See GWAR’s influence on modern technological inventions, watch GWAR kill more historical dead guys, and drop in on a very special 1990s talk show episode taping. That’s right, this is the issue you demanded: GWAR of yesterday meets GWAR of today and things are gonna get…emotional.

In Gwar Orgasmageddon #3, the battle against the Kraken has a violent end, as the band tries to fix the cock-ship. When it displaces them to 16th Italy, they run into an old friend, an old enemy, and Leonardo DaVinci. It seems Sawborg has been busy since his run in with Mr. Perfect. The issue is the usual craziness that we’ve come to expect so far. This isn’t for the faint at heart. With only one issue left, I’m curious to see how this murderous tale of revenge and humor ends.

The art manages to mix in sizable quantities of gore, violence, and humor. It even gives a small cameo of the Oderus Urungus, as they appeared on the infamous Jerry Springer show. There’s also some interesting views of Renaissance era Italy. Even the violent scenes are getting more gore, as the series progresses.

This is a series that doesn’t take itself too seriously and likes to amp things up as high as it can go not just over the top but setting a new bar of insane fun.

Story: Matt Miner, Matt Maguire Art: Jonathan Brandon Sawyer
Story: 8.5 Art: 8.5 Overall: 8.5 Recommendation: Buy

Dynamite Entertainment provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Review: Gwar: Orgasmageddon #2

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Thrown into the past by Mr. Perfect, our favorite “Scumdogs of the Universe” GWAR are fighting their way through time like a horde of insane drunken children, killing and defiling all in their path. Find out what REALLY happened in our human history and get the full story of GWAR’s involvement in World War II, Aztec human sacrifices, and the sinking of the Titanic, plus meet the BRAND-NEW MONSTER with a name so foul we can’t print it here and an appearance so obscene we couldn’t draw it on the cover! This book is a gut punch of social conscience wrapped in a blood-soaked corpse and sprinkled with comedy dynamite.

Dinosaurs, Nazis, dragons, human sacrifice, and a Kraken, oh my. Gwar: Orgasmageddon #2 outdoes the first when it comes to humor and violence of the first as the cock-ship randomly transports them through time. This forces them to shape history as the locals react to their presence. The additional tales at the end continue the humor in disturbing and perverse ways.

The art style continues to blend humor and violence in a spectacular fashion. The issue increases the amount of violence and action when the story calls for it but also dials it back when neccessary at the rare times when it isn’t needed. That creates some contrast and changes things up as things manage to somehow get stranger as the story progresses.

Story: Matt Miner, Matt Maguire Art: Jonathan Brandon Sawyer
Story: 8.5 Art: 9.0 Overall: 8.75 Recommendation: Buy

Dynamite Entertainment provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Review Vampblade Vol. 4

Comic fan, cosplayer, and shop manager Katie Carva continues her quest as Vampblade. Fighting invisible other-dimensional vampires straight from the 90s comics of her namesake, the blades push her to all new extremes! It’s all new next-level Vampblade adventures, shiny and chrome! Vampblade Vol. 4 collects the complete first story arc for the second season of the hit Danger Zone series

The fourth volume of Vampblade brings us more humorous violence, geek themed puns, and even a cameo from the king of cameos. It’s comes complete with vampire space dicks, a car chase in the Batmobile, all in the Windy City of Chicago.  What’s great is that the trade includes a brief summary of the first three volumes allowing new readers to easily jump on board. It’s a must have for fans of other characters who merge humor, violence and fourth wall breaking.

The art continues what I enjoyed about the first three volumes blending action and humor. The series even gives subtle nods to other Action Lab series, like Zombie Tramp.

Despite all of that, the strange end scene manages to steal the show gving us space dicks with a different look and an overhaul in color and appearance. It’s all about variety!

Story: Jason Martin Art: Marco Maccagni, Winston Young
Story: 9.0 Art: 9.0 Overall: 9.0 Recommendation: Buy

Action Labs Entertainment provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Review: Grimm Fairy Tales: Tarot #1

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The Mysterious Order of Tarot has emerged from the shadows with its sights set on ruling the Realms of Power. With the courts of Swords, Cups, Wands, and Pentacles at his command the Emperor is ready to launch his assault on the Grimm Universe and the only thing that stands in his way is a wild card named, Talisman.

Grimm Fairy Tales: Tarot #1 gives us an inescapable destiny and a man who is stubborn enough to run from it. Always on the run, he attempts to avoid all he can to become the King of Pentacles and that means relying on those whose past actions are extremely suspicious. Reluctantly Talisman has very litttle choice, as his life may depend on it.

The art by Ranto Rei blends fantasy and reality seamlessly. It showcases various magical worlds for brief periods of time, as the story leaps between them and Earth. It manages to pack in a lot of action and story in the process as well. It even shows various creatures of myth, including the Morrigan and goblins.

Story: Joe Brusha Art: Renato Rei
Story: 8.0 Art: 8.5 Overall: 8.25 Recommendation: Buy

 

Zenescope provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Review: Black Hammer #7

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Joe Weber: the Black Hammer. A hero from the Spiral Slums. A husband. A father. Gone without a trace.

A visitor from the outside world arrives on the farm, looking for the Black Hammer and bringing news of Spiral City to its Golden Age heroes. Her arrival stirs up old memories and awakens new hope in the marooned heroes.

In Black Hammer #7 we finally get a glimpse and origin of the title character. While Black Hammer’s origin tale has a definite Kirby influence, writer Jeff Lemire gives us his own unique and interesting take. He even reveals how the characters got trapped and transported into their current situation. I’m curious to see how things progress from here, with Black Hammer’s daughter now in town and what’s been revealed in this issue.

Artist Dean Ormston manages amplify the Kirby influence of Black Hammer’s origin. Yet as the past and present switch places, it is clear he manages to distinguish each setting with great ease. The issue uses a mix of golden age and silver age art techniques for the past while using a more modern art style for the present.

As always, a fantastic issue for a fantastic series.

Story: Jeff Lemire Art: Dean Ormston
Story: 8.5 Art: 9.0 Overall: 8.75 Recommendation: Buy

Dark Horse provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Review: Robyn Hood: The Hunt #1

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Robyn has finally taken down the monsters and villains that have plagued New York for far too long. Now, with the streets safe again, Robyn unfortunately isn’t going to get to enjoy them.

After being transported to an otherworldly, high tech, maximum security prison, she must fight for her life from some of the very creatures she has placed there. Will she survive with enough of herself intact to get back to the city she calls home? Find out, in Robyn Hood: The Hunt!

It seems even heroism has a price these days. Robyn’s life goes from being a hero to being a prisoner. A prison filled with old foes, and a strange potential ally. Even as Robyn’s very life is at stake, as things go from bad to worse. Will she escape alive? Who runs this strange prison?

The art is clean and possesses a nice sense of flow throughout the action sequences.  Even the prison is oddly bright, almost sci-fi in design. Yet there is a sense of uniformity in the prison (spandex looking) clothes. Even the guards all look relatively the same.

Story: Latoya Morgan Art: Salvatore Cuffari
Story: 8.0 Art: 8.5 Overall: 8.25 Recommendation: Buy

Zenescope provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Review: Night’s Dominion: Season 2 #1

The Cult of Uhlume is no more, and the city of Umber nurses its wounds, as do the reluctant heroes who saved it. Trauma and tragedy have left their mark on Emerane, the lowly barmaid. But when Asps target the city’s Alderman, as well as its champion, the Furie, she finds herself donning the mantle of the Night once again, and coming to their defense — whether she’s ready or not.

In Night’s Dominion: Season 2 #1 we finally see the aftermath of the events of the first story arc. Yet, the city of Umber wants to turn a blind eye to what truly happened. This forces the heroes of the previous story arc to return to their normal lives. That does not seem to last long as the streets become a hunting ground for assassins. It’s an exciting beginning, as Ted Naifeh weaves a tale of fantasy and heroism once more.

The art continues to impress. It showcases a lot of contrast and color palettes as environments shift. Even doing some decent close-up show of familiar faces, and new alike. Yet, a decent of amount of quick action continues to steal the show. We also get a possible peek at what may happen next.

Story: Ted Naifeh Art: Ted Naifeh
Story: 8.5 Art: 8.5 Overall: 8.5 Recommendation: Buy

Oni Press provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

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